MARSHALL, Texas. (KTAL/KMSS) — Wiley College announced Thursday that due to the coronavirus pandemic, its students will continue to take online classes and learn virtually in the Fall semester of 2020.
President Herman Felton Jr. released a statement Thursday evening, explaining why the campus is continuing with virtual learning.
Dear Wildcat Family:
At its introduction to the Wildcat family, COVID-19 brought challenges, upheaval, and death. Our nation asked each of us to make sacrifices for the good of the nation. We followed the science and recommendations of the nation’s leading allergy and infectious disease experts and we made progress. You, the student body of Wiley College, made sacrifices, adjusted on the fly, seamlessly transitioned from in-person to the virtual education process. I am grateful for your patience and resilience during those challenging days.
I commend you. Unfortunately, I ask for more patience and resilience. We find ourselves in a continuum of unprecedented times. On this day, Texas has experienced its highest rate of infection (over 7K) and is one of 32 states now putting the reopening efforts on pause. While we have yet to experience the “peak”, it is imminent and according to the state epidemiologist, “we will likely rollout of the first wave in late august early September and right into the second wave and the flu season in the fall”. Thus, I have decided, that our college will deliver instruction virtually and will maintain its “essential personnel posture” through the 2020 fall semester.
Based on our desire to protect the health and safety of our Wiley family from COVID-19, Wiley College’s administration began to meet in early March to discuss the novel virus and its potential impact on Wiley. This decision comes after several months of monitoring, researching and planning for every possible on-campus scenario. Please know that during planning, our ultimate goal was to bring every student, faculty, and staff member back to our beloved campus. The science, data, projections, and counsel from state health officials simply does not lend itself to re-entry at this point.
The fall 2020 semester will begin on August 3 and commence on November 20. Also, all fall sports, homecoming and nonessential travel for faculty, students and staff are cancelled. Current student-athlete scholarships will be maintained for fall 2020 at the 2020-2021 tuition and fee rate. New Student Orientation will be held virtually Saturday, July 25th through Friday, July 31st via Zoom conferencing. All new students will receive the meeting link and further instructions prior to.
As we continue to support our students’ educational goals, all campus resources will be available virtually to Wiley students to ensure academic productivity. Additionally, Wiley College has purchased laptops and Wi-Fi hotspots for each registered student who expressed a need. The laptops are retrofitted to support online classes and ensure access to library resources, MS Office, and various educational needs. Every continuing student, who has registered and requested clearance for fall 2020, will receive further details regarding fall 2020 operations. Please monitor your Wiley email, as well as the college’s website and social media platforms for additional updates regarding graduation and fall 2020.
Throughout our history, Wiley College has faced and conquered many challenges. Without a doubt, we will survive COVID-19. Please be vigilant, wear face coverings, practice hand-washing, hygiene, and physical distancing.
Herman J. Felton, Jr., J.D., Ph.D.
President and CEO
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